US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi Begins Asia Tour Amid Buzz She Might Visit Taiwan

US House Speaker Begins Asia Tour Between Buzz You Can Visit Taiwan

Nancy Pelosi’s Asia tour comes at a politically sensitive time for the leaders of China and the United States. (File)


US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi will begin her four-country tour of Asia on Monday in Singapore amid speculation that she might risk Beijing’s fury by visiting Taiwan. autonomous island claimed by China.

On Sunday, Pelosi’s office announced that she was leading a congressional delegation to the region that includes visits to Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea and Japan. It doesn’t mention Taiwan.

China sees the visits of US officials to Taiwan as an encouraging signal for the pro-independence camp in the island. Washington has no formal diplomatic relations with Taiwan but is bound by law to provide the island with the means to defend itself.

The visit by Pelosi, third in line to the presidential line of succession and a longtime critic of China, will come amid worsening relations between Washington and Beijing. Republican Newt Gingrich was the last House speaker to visit Taiwan in 1997.

In a phone call last Thursday, Chinese President Xi Jinping warned his US counterpart Joe Biden that Washington should adhere to the one China principle and that “those who play with fire will be destroyed by it”. “.

Biden told Xi that US policy on Taiwan has not changed and that Washington strongly opposes unilateral efforts to change the status quo or undermine peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.

On Monday, Taiwanese Prime Minister Su Tseng-chang did not directly respond when asked if Pelosi would visit on Thursday, as local media had speculated.

“We always warmly welcome visits to the country by foreign guests,” he told reporters in Taipei.

Pelosi is expected to arrive in Singapore on Monday for a two-day visit, broadcaster CNA reported, citing the country’s Foreign Ministry. The American Chamber of Commerce in Singapore planned to host a reception with her on Monday afternoon, its website said.

On Sunday, Chinese air force spokesman Shen Jinke was quoted by state media as saying that Beijing would “resolutely defend national sovereignty and territorial integrity”.

Shen said at a military broadcast that the air force has a variety of fighters capable of flying around “the precious island of our motherland,” referring to Taiwan.

Beijing considers Taiwan part of its territory and has never renounced the use of force to bring the island under its control.

Pelosi’s Asia tour comes at a politically sensitive time for the leaders of China and the United States.

Mr. Xi is expected to secure a precedent-breaking third term of leadership later this year during the ruling Communist Party’s biennial congress. In the United States, Biden’s Democrats face an uphill battle for control of the House at the November midterm elections.

Last Wednesday, Biden told reporters he thinks the US military believes Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan “is not a good idea right now”.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from an aggregated feed.)

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